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Sachin ducks Lodha reforms bouncer

Sachin ducks Lodha reforms bouncer
Highlights

When I was growing up, I watched Imran bowling to Gavaskar and their rivalry was really engaging. We saw how to defend on  backfoot among

- ‘God of cricket’ says rivalries are missing from Test cricket
- Tendulkar bats for two pitches in single Ranji Trophy game

Master’s musings
When I was growing up, I watched Imran bowling to Gavaskar and their rivalry was really engaging. We saw how to defend on backfoot among many other things. The competitive rivalries of Richards-Jeff Thompson, Curtly Ambrose-Steve Waugh, Brian Lara-Glenn McGrath generated a lot of interest among the fans “Let us have the Ranji first innings on a green top with kookaburra balls which will give openers a challenge.

Even bowlers will have something. Our spinners will also learn how to bowl with kookaburra on Green tops. 2nd innings should be played on track with the SG Test ball which will also help our batsmen”

New Delhi : Refusing to comment on the R.M. Lodha Committee's recommendations, Sachin Tendulkar asserted that "everything is not perfect and changes are needed to be made to ensure India remains the leading side in the world."

"The matter is in the Supreme Court, and it'll be unwise to get into the details and pass any judgment," Tendulkar said while replying to a question on Lodha Committee recommendations during an interactive session at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit here.

"From the cricketing point of view, I have got a lot of support from BCCI and MCA. BCCI has also supported the game a lot. The board has helped all the players to get to where they are," he added.

The Lodha Committee, which was appointed by the SC to clean up cricket administration in India following a corruption and spot-fixing scandal in theIPL, had advised a host of far reaching changes which, if implemented, could alter the way the game is run in the country.

Test cricket needs some great rivalries again to get back the interest the longest form of the game once held for fans, batting great Sachin Tendulkarsaid .

"When I was growing up, I watched Imran Khan bowling to Sunil Gavaskar and their rivalry was really engaging. We saw how to defend on backfoot among many other things. The competitive rivalries of Viv Richards-Jeff Thompson, Curtly Ambrose-Steve Waugh, Brian Lara-Glenn McGrath generated a lot of interest among the fans.

"The West Indies were magnificent in the 1980s and also in the 1990s. The whole world's target was to beat them. Then came Australia. They had nine world class players and two terrific players. If 3-4 of their players clicked and did the job, they would win. That is missing today," Tendulkar said.

The batting legend, who retired from the game in 2013, added that the mindset of the spectators had changed due to the advent of Twenty20 cricket and technology.

"The mindset of the people is changing. Twenty20s and technology has changed that mindset. When I was growing up, we were watching Tests and now kids watch T20," the 43-year-old said.

Does he miss cricket post his retirement?
"I did not miss playing cricket after I retired but it is nice to play an exhibition game once in a while. I played three games in America with retired cricketers and the response was magnificent. But yes, I do miss the love and affection of the fans," said Tendulkar, who played 200 Tests for India.

"It is nice that I get to do the things that I could not do while playing. Overall it has given me the opportunity to live life on my terms and and mingle around."

As Indian domestic cricket circuit tries to reinvent itself, the he suggested that every Ranji Trophy game should be played on two different pitches to prepare a better Test team for overseas assignments.

He also had an interesting take on how to make bilateral Test series engaging -- by having back-to-back home-and-away rubbers so that the strength of two teams remains mostly constant but the conditions change to make for a bigger challenge.

However, it is Tendulkar's suggested innovations of two different pitches for a single Ranji match which will make anyone sit up and take notice.

"I have thought a lot about neutral venues in Ranji Trophy (which is being experimented this season). I have a suggestion which can be radical. When we go to places like Australia, New Zealand, West Indies and South Africa, we play with kookaburra balls which swings early. Think about a young Ranji batsman playing with SG Test in India and then facing difficulty overseas," Tendulkar spoke at Hindustan Times Leadership Summit.

"Let us have the first innings on a green top with kookaburra balls which would give openers a challenge. Even bowlers will have something. Our spinners will also learn how to bowl with kookaburra on Green tops," Tendulkar explained.

His next suggestion was even more interesting. "Now let there be a pitch adjacent to the green top which would be a rank Turner. Now the second innings will be played on that track with the SG Test ball which would also help our batsmen play against quality spin bowling. We have been too focussed on playing pace in overseas conditions but we should not forget how to play spin bowling.

"Don't forget even overseas teams are losing to us in India. May be they would start using SG in their domestic matches."

For Tendulkar, two pitches, two balls in two innings of a match takes Curator preparing designer pitches out of the equation and also nullifies the toss factor.

"A captain would start thinking that winning the toss will give him only 10 percent advantage that is his right to choose first. But if he chooses to bowl on green top he should remember that he would need to bat on a Turner in the fourth innings," he said making it clear that it may or may not click.

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